Free Krita Tutorials: The Ultimate List For Digital Artists & Animators
Free painting programs are great for newer artists. You can learn digital painting without shelling out money for premium software like Photoshop.
We recently covered free art tutorials for GIMP which is another free painting program.
And in this post I’ll focus on Krita. It’s a free open source painting program for artists who want to draw & paint digitally without breaking the bank.
And since Krita is totally free you’ll find a bunch of tutorials out there also released 100% free.
Setup Wacom Tablet with Krita
The very first step for anyone learning to paint on the computer is learning to connect their tablet.
You need a drawing tablet to work with these programs. But they all connect a little differently and they all have their own settings panels.
If you check out this video you’ll find a step-by-step guide to connect your tablet into Krita.
This video specifically covers Wacom tablets but they process is often similar for other brands like Parblo and Huion.
Either way you’ll need to connect a tablet before you can paint.
If you’ve already done this on your own, great!
If not then try to follow along and make sure you’ve got it working before moving onto anything else.
Setup Krita for Digital Painting
When you open Krita for the first time it can be intimidating.
You can find some guides to the interface online but they’re not perfect. And if you’re more of a visual learner you’ll probably want to follow a video anyways.
This video is pretty long spanning over 20 minutes of detailed info on the Krita interface.
Anyone who’s brand new to the software should check this out and see what you can learn.
It’s possibly the most important intro to Krita since it teaches you the GUI specifically for painting.
Introduction to Krita
Here’s another really cool introductory video recorded & narrated by artist Sara Tepes.
This offers a smaller introduction to Krita with simpler explanations for all the tools.
It certainly runs a bit shorter totaling around 12 minutes long. It’s still a great follow-up for picking up Krita since you can get through it fast and pinpoint areas of the GUI you need to study more.
Phil Waclawski: Krita Basics
You might want a tutorials that’s incredibly detailed to learn all about Krita from start to finish.
In that case you’ll really wanna watch this presentation by professor & Linux master Phil Waclawski. He presented this hour-long guide to Krita in front of the Phoenix Linux Users Group.
Not sure if I mentioned this before but Krita runs on Linux. One of the very few painting programs that works outside of the Mac & Windows environments.
Yet even if you aren’t familiar with Linux you can still learn a lot from this video.
It’ll cover everything about Krita from brushes to color selection and creating/managing open documents. A fantastic presentation for all digital artists but especially useful for those running Linux.
What Brushes To Use In Krita
Getting started with a new program means learning everything from scratch.
This includes all the interface components along with assets like brushes. Digital painting is pointless without the right brushes.
Thankfully this video covers some of the best brushes you can use when just starting in Krita.
It’s a fairly quick video just under 10 minutes long and it comes from the wildly popular YouTube channel Mart’s Struggle with Drawing.
Whether you’re brand new to digital painting or already a pro just diving into Krita, either way these brush recommendations will put you on the right track to success.
Color Mixing Brushes Tutorial
Here’s another brush tutorial but with a focus on mixing colors with brushes.
Every painting program works a bit differently when it comes to mixing colors. Krita is super easy once you get it down into a workflow.
But this can take time and the fastest way to speed this up is through a tutorial.
Try following this guide from GDQuest as part of their full Krita series and see what you can learn.
Like everything here it’s best to keep what’s useful, discard the rest, and play around on your own to figure out how you want to paint.
Krita Layers Tutorial
Photoshop’s layers panel is perhaps the most-used feature for all design work. It’s a necessity to create so many effects whether you’re editing a photo or painting an illustration.
Krita has its own layers feature and this video guide will get you up-to-speed on it.
The video is only 6 minutes long so you can work through the material fast. It’s also pretty detailed so you don’t need much prior experience to fully grasp the concept of layers.
Just remember that working with layers is crucial to painting great pieces. The sooner you get familiar with layers the faster you can pick up Krita.
Painting with Krita – Getting Started
GDquest has a ton of great videos on their channel but it’s not a Krita-only channel.
I’ve tried to curate their best stuff here, but if you follow any of their tutorials this one is a must-watch.
It’s 7 minutes in total and shows you how to start a digital painting with the software.
You’ll learn how to work with Krita’s brush tool, how to swap colors fast, and how to flesh out your ideas on-the-fly. Krita is a flexible program if you can learn how it works.
That’s the main goal of this video in a nutshell.
How To Paint In Krita
Another “how to get started” video that I really like is this one by JennaDrawing. She teaches you how to dive into Krita and get moving the right way.
I’m sure you’re eager to start throwing brush strokes willy-nilly. But you’ll get much more controlled work if you learn how to create documents, manage brushes, and alter settings like layer opacity.
Jenna covers all that stuff in this 15-minute video so it’s a great choice to bookmark if you’re looking to start painting.
Note this vid shows Krita as it looks on Windows but the lessons apply to all operating systems.
Understanding Krita’s Blending Modes
There’s a lot of cool stuff you can do with blending modes and layers.
When this word pops up most people think of Photoshop and photo editing. Yet digital painting has just as much room for blend modes if you know how to use them.
Take a peek at this tutorial spanning just under 12 minutes on Krita blend modes.
The lessons are really basic and it doesn’t show much practical use for blending in a real-world scenario.
Yet these techniques can apply to your work if you’re feeling a bit adventurous on a new panting.
A Comic Page From A to Z
Ever wanted to launch your own webcomic or create a digital comic book?
With Krita you can do just that. And with this tutorial you can follow David Revoy as he creates a full comic page from start to finish.
This is a super long video totaling almost 2 hours. It also has no real narration and parts of the video are sped up to reduce time.
I’d recommend this more for semi-experienced artists who want to move into Krita for comics.
You can follow David’s process and try mimicking this yourself to nail the workflow.
Square In Perspective Using Krita
Now this tutorial is pretty unique since it’s focused more on basic fundamental skills.
Drawing a perfect square becomes so much easier with practice. Websites like Draw A Box make this even simpler.
If you want to draw digitally then this video might help. It shows you how to create perspective grids and work within Krita to draw accurate shapes in near-perfect perspective.
With 20 minutes of runtime it’s a somewhat lengthy tutorial just for drawing boxes.
However it can prove useful when accuracy is more important than creativity.
Painting Hair in Krita
Many artists would agree that hair is the toughest subject to paint.
You have to look at hair more as an object rather than individual strands. But you also want to paint hair that isn’t an object so it looks realistic.
It’s a tough cookie to crack.
And if you’re struggling with hair in Krita this video might help. It’s around 18 minutes of instruction with step-by-step guidance for painting beautiful hair from scratch.
I always recommend drawing from life to master any subject and that still remains true.
But I also think digital work is completely different than traditional work. This tutorial can help you get comfortable with the digital side.
Lineart Tips With Krita
Another brilliant video from artist David Revoy as he shares line art tips working in Krita.
One of the best ways to get started painting is to work on your lineart. You can either trace scanned drawings or work digitally first, then on a new layer start painting.
It gives you way more room to get expressive while remaining true to the original line work.
David’s video is fairly short but also lengthy enough to build your confidence laying down lines.
Digital Painting Game Assets
I’d argue this video tutorial is one of my absolute favorites in the entire list.
Artist Douglas Lopes is fairly new to the world of digital art, yet you’d never second guess his skills based on his work.
You can find some awesome tuts on his channel and my absolute favorite has to be this gem.
It’s around 25 minutes long and shows you how to paint a digital game asset from scratch. Specifically a rock design with a sigil of some kind.
All work is done using Krita with a brilliant workflow for newer artists to watch.
Along with the subject matter being useful to aspiring concept artists, I also really like the tutorial because it’s just plain simple. Beginners can follow along with relative ease and build confidence painting in Krita.
Turn Pencil Sketch into Digital Painting
Scanning a drawing and importing that to Krita offers a foundation for your paintings.
But once you get the file scanned in you may not know where to go next. That’s where this awesome video comes into play.
It’s a detailed guide for anyone who wants to move from traditional to digital using Krita.
Our friendly artist Mart is back again with more advice for mastering painting. This time you’ll learn how to work on top of a scanned drawing and use that line work as a template.
Granted this is pretty short totaling around 6 minutes but it’s worth a watch if you prefer doing your sketches traditionally.
Coloring & Skin in Krita
So this video by Griatch Art is actually a timelapse from start to finish.
The learning comes primarily from watching their movements, their tool choices, and how they mix colors for skin tones.
Learning to finish a drawing is one of the toughest things for beginning artists. This goes double for digital work because it’s so easy to close the document and start over.
If you need a narrated guide this probably won’t help.
But I think it’s worth saving if you feel comfortable painting digitally and want to take your finished pieces to the next level.
Let’s Animate A Ball In Krita 3
You might be surprised to learn that Krita isn’t just a painting program. It also supports real animation work if you want to do 2D animation.
And what’s the easiest thing to animate? Many animation students will have the same answer: a bouncing ball.
This video is the best introduction to animation with Krita. It teaches you the entire process over 22 minutes from starting a new document to creating each frame and polishing along the way.
It’s probably the best intro for anyone new to Krita who also wants to specialize in animation work.
Is it gonna teach you everything? Of course not.
But it will cover the basics of animation in Krita with lots of detail. And really that’s all you need to get started.
Make A Simple Animation In Krita 3
Here’s one more animation tutorial taught using Krita 3 and some basic techniques.
This one is a bit shorter with only 10 minutes of runtime. A very simple intro perfect to watch alongside the above tutorial.
I’d argue the bouncing ball is better to start with, then watch this as a follow-up once you’re done.
Also have a look at the suggestions in YouTube’s sidebar for this video. You may be surprised just how many Krita animation tutorials are out there(and totally free!).
Self-Portrait in Krita
Let’s wrap up this list with a fun video from infamous YouTube artist Sycra.
He’s been publishing tutorials for years now and he’s one of the more well-known teachers on YouTube.
In this brief video he creates a self-portrait from scratch using Krita. He doesn’t exactly show you the step-by-step process but he does explain what he’s doing along the way.
Since it’s in real-time and narrated you can learn a lot from this video.
Just make sure you try this on your own because that’s really the best way to learn.
Granted if you want to paint portraits of others then I might recommend Proko’s course on portrait drawing. All those lessons apply digitally so it’s a nice place to start.
But if you just want to learn Krita and make awesome paintings I totally recommend Sycra’s video to get you inspired and raring to go.